A draft environmental impact statement has been prepared for a big Liberty Lake-area development that was announced two years ago and includes plans for about 1,800 residences and lots for light industrial use.
Called Liberty Lake Meadows, the development would cover about 300 acres between Mission Avenue and Interstate 90 east of Simpson Road, near MeadowWood Golf Course and The Glen and The Estates housing developments. About 225 acres of that tract would be used for 643 single-family homes, 32 duplexes, and six parcels that would accommodate 1,100 multi-family housing units. Another nearly 75 acres would be divided into 16 lots for light industrial uses, plans on file with the county show.
Because of the large size and potential impact of the development, Spokane County called for an environmental impact statement, says John Pederson, a Spokane County planner. Traffic analysis and studies of potential impacts on other infrastructure, such as water and sewer services, have been completed, and the draft statement is now available for public comment, he says. A final environmental impact statement will be prepared to answer the questions brought up in the 30-day comment period now under way.
Pederson says preparation of the final statement will take another several months, then plats for the project can go before the county hearing examiner. Some of the issues that will be addressed as the project moves forward include extending water and sewer service to the project, which lies outside the service-area boundaries of the Liberty Lake sewer and water districts, and transportation improvements that would be needed along Harvard Road and other roads in the area as traffic increased with development, Pederson says.
Liberty Lake Meadows was first proposed about two-and-a-half years ago by Kennett Partnership, which includes Spokane Realtor Bob Tomlinson and a Newport, Wash., family. At that time, the preliminary plan called for about 500 single-family homes, 500 multi-family units, 64 duplex units, and 29 industrial lots. The proposed project has been modified to include more residential units and fewer industrial lots.
Pederson says a planned unit development overlay zone was requested by the partnership after the preliminary plat was first filed in January 1997, and that gave the development more flexibility in lot size and configuration. Documents filed by the partnership with the county point out that because the partnership plans to sell phases of the project to builders for development over 20 years, flexibility is needed to accommodate the changes in tastes and needs in housing and neighborhoods that can be expected in that length of time.
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